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anxiety cbd CBD lifestyle mental health natural wellness

Let’s Talk CBD…

CBD is the new craze. With the legalization of marijuana in Canada, there has been a lot more information being released regarding the health benefits especially CBD. I was skeptical about trying CBD as I have diagnosed anxiety disorder and I have heard through the grapevine that CBD can work wonders for anxiety. So I took the leap.

I decided to trust a Canadian brand called Birch + Fog because they are so informative and open about their products, lab results, where they get their CBD from etc. Their website is extremely helpful if you are new to CBD (like me) and they explain it in a way that’s easy to understand and grasp without being confused about all the science etc. They also have an Instagram page where you can get the inside scoop on deals and if you have any questions they are really quick with responding via direct message!

So, why CBD? Why not just smoke weed? Well, CBD (cannabidiol) is an all-natural cannabis compound that provides all of the medicinal benefits of cannabis without the feeling of being “high”. For people like me, I don’t smoke because I get very paranoid and it actually heightens my anxiety. But, CBD provides a calming effect and I love the all-natural compounds compared to prescription medication such as pills etc that can give you a ton of rough side effects depending on which medication you’re on.

When choosing a method, it’s important to think about how fast you want it to take effect. Tinctures take around 20 minutes to take effect and are pretty discreet, but some people aren’t too keen on the taste. Edibles such as gummies can take up to 1-2 hours but this also depends and varies from person to person. Vape pens are almost immediate and take effect within minutes – this is my favourite method because it is so small, discreet, tastes fine and is easy to put in my purse for on the go. But, I have heard that tinctures can be so great and easy to use as well and most people will drop it in their coffee in the morning as some of the tinctures are pretty tasteless. Or, you can drop it under your tongue if you don’t have much time. I love that all of these methods aren’t harsh at all and are very quick and easy to use while also being convenient to take with you in your bag etc.

The most important part is to define what your needs are and the dosage you should be taking. It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor or a health professional before getting started on a new form of medication, even if it is natural. They will help you decide which one is best for you and the correct dosage! I have heard the the tincture drops are best for before bed to aid with your sleep, especially if you are like me and have multiple nights that require over an hour just to fall asleep. Do your own research before committing to a product and read reviews.

Hopefully this helped a bit with understanding CBD and what you should look for. If you shop at Birch + Fog, you can use code 20SAM to get $20 off of any order of $50 or more, they always have ton of deals going on so keep an eye out and don’t hesitate to reach out to me via Instagram if you have any questions.

Stay well, my friends!

Categories
anxiety mental health

10 Tips for Coping With Anxiety

Have you ever felt like your brain was becoming more and more tense by the second? Racing with thoughts, unable to concentrate on tasks, conversations, work… It’s a daily struggle for many people, including me. I have struggled with my anxiety for years, even before I knew what it was. I just thought it was completely normal, that everyone gets outbursts sometimes, everyone cries over minor things, everyone is unable to control their thoughts and worries…This happened to everyone and so I shouldn’t think anything of it. Wrong. It got too much, to a point where I couldn’t take it and I finally seeked help from my doctor. But, if you’re like me – medication doesn’t always do the trick and it can also take a very long time for it to even start working effectively. I have some key coping mechanisms that have helped me get through my days and also get through anxiety attacks that I feel coming on.

  1. The most important tip to remember is that your mind needs balance. How is your mind supposed to be balanced if the rest of your body isn’t? It’s time to start eating balanced and healthier meals. Eat regular meals and ensure you are taking in lots of water.
  2. Limit caffeine. I know this one is a total bummer especially for coffee lovers, and I still have a hard time with this too. But, instead of completely cutting it out – try to start with reducing your intake. If you drink 3 coffees per day, try 2. Caffeine is known to often aggravate anxiety and trigger anxiety/panic attacks.
  3. If you feel an anxiety attack coming on, take a seat, and breathe deeply and slowly. I follow a breathing rule inhaling deeply for 10 seconds and then slowly exhaling for 10 seconds then repeating if necessary. It usually takes me a few times before I start to truly calm myself.
  4. Change your focus. If you feel yourself getting irritable, uneasy, anxious etc. try to change your focus to something else. Watch a TV show, read a book, try exercising (which although can be hard to get yourself up and going, is very effective!!!)
  5. Painting or drawing (if you like to), can help ease the mind and enable your mind to focus on the act of painting, the colours, and how soothing it can be.
  6. Journal out your thoughts. Whenever I felt extremely overwhelmed, I would capture those thoughts and put them into poems – it’s actually where my best work came from. It’s a great way to relieve and unload your mind.
  7. Recognize the signs. Everyone is different which means the signs could be totally different. But, recognizing the signs before an anxiety attack can truly help you to be proactive by preventing an attack, calming down before it gets too much and noticing the signs way earlier.
  8. Stay in regular contact with friends and family, especially those who are close to you. Surround yourself with people you can open up to and talk with. Loneliness and isolation can be very hard on your mental health, especially anxiety and depression.
  9. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Therapy is becoming less and less stigmatized and is often talked about as being important even if you don’t have anxiety or depression. It can be helpful for everyday life, to enhance it and allow you to truly live your best, mentally. The truth is, you have to allow yourself to get the help you deserve and to talk about what is going on, even if it’s hard to explain.
  10. The last tip is one that I just learned recently, and it may sound silly but it works. When you are feeling anxious, grab an ice cube from your freezer and squeeze it in your hand. The coldness immediately takes your mind off of any anxious thoughts, because it is focused on the cold shock in your hands. If you don’t have ice cubes, try cold water!

It is important to take time for yourself. Your mental state is incredibly precious and self-care goes a long way. The trick is to check in with yourself every so often, ask yourself either in your head or aloud – how am I feeling? If you feel off, proceed to ask yourself what you need at the moment. Maybe it’s as simple as a tight hug or it could be more complex and having a reoccurring issue finally be solved – whatever it is, you are capable of controlling your own thoughts and feelings. We are so strong and life can throw some heavy stuff at us, but we rise up and keep on. Isn’t that amazing?

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mental health Uncategorized

IT IS OKAY TO FEEL UNEASY IN TIMES OF UNCERTAINTY

This whole pandemic has not only set off a whole realm of loneliness for a lot of people, but also a lot of anxiety and uncertainty. If you find yourself unsure of what to do with your life, unable to sleep or sleeping too much, feeling restless – IT IS OKAY. A lot of us have been go-go-go with our jobs, family, relationships, school, side hustles etc. It is totally okay to feel uneasy with how the world is right now. It is not easy for anyone. One of the good things about this isolation period is that the whole world is doing the same thing. Most of us are laid off, at home, unable to see relatives or friends, unable to do our usual routine. It is extremely probable that the pandemic has caused people increasing anxiety, and for people diagnosed with anxiety already – a pretty hard time. “People often don’t realize that their difficulties with focus, memory, sleep and relationships can all be related to anxiety,” says Amelia Aldao, clinical psychologist and founder of Together CBT in New York City. I am here to tell you IT IS OKAY.

So, let’s take a deep breath for a moment. This pandemic is probably going to last a bit longer than we all would like it to and what we need to do is come up with a new routine. Or, if you’re not into routine – just different things to do throughout the day to ensure that we don’t get tangled in all of that anxiety and stir-craziness.

  1. The first thing to do is to limit the amount of news you watch. I know it is a horrific time and that is all that is blasted everywhere, but limiting this is truly what will be best for your own sake and mental health. I am not telling you to completely block it out and act like nothing is wrong, but to limit the amount you watch/read.
  2. Continue with a SCHEDULE/ROUTINE. If you are someone who is normally structured and organized, don’t think of this time as a free-for-all. Keeping a steady schedule despite the circumstances will ensure that you are staying sane and busy.
  3. Which adds to my next point, KEEP BUSY. This can be done in an unlimited amount of ways. Take a bath, journal, draw, paint, garden, work-out, watch movies, get started on a new tv series, read a book or two or three!!!, call up a friend etc.
  4. Wake up and go to bed at your normal time. This one has honestly been one of the hardest ones for me. My sleeping schedule has been out of whack and that causes me so much stress because if I go to bed late, I typically wake up late and then I’m upset that I wasted ___ # of hours of the day. Wake up early still and go to bed at a reasonable time!
  5. If you work from home – try not to overload. With this stress and anxiety, it can become overwhelming and chances are your memory and work ethic is not what it was. Break up tasks, give yourself breaks, drink lots of water and feed yourself properly.
  6. Which goes again, feed yourself properly. I know that because the routine is off, sometimes we may forget to make breakfast or lunch, or maybe just hydrate properly. Try to truly make an effort to nourish your body and eat properly (bonus if it’s healthy!)
  7. Pick up a new skill/hobby. When is the last time you painted? What about gardening? Working out? Is there a task that you’ve been putting off such as painting the basement, redoing the deck? Take this time to do the things that you weren’t planning on doing before while you have the time.
  8. Check up on friends and family. Although you may not be able to go and visit, or maybe you can if you stay 6 feet apart (do not come for me if they change this rule!!!) A simple facetime call can help to stay connected while also checking up on your loved ones. We all need checking up on, especially if we are struggling through this. Take a few minutes and call that person (or multiple people), they will really enjoy your company.
  9. YouTube. I have been catching up on some of my favourite YouTubers lately and I am really enjoying it – especially because there are a lot of them who have decided to post daily vlogs, which gets me excited to watch and gives me something to do every day. Or, if you’re feeling creative – make your own YouTube channel and get recording!
  10. Get yourself ready. I have found that whenever I get out of bed, take a nice shower and do my hair/makeup – I feel way better. I feel like “hey, at least I did that today!”
  11. Take some online courses. Ever heard of Shaw Academy? They have a variety of online classes that you can take that range from marketing, social media and graphic design to beauty, music, finance, photography and more! They are doing a free trial and then if you’d like to continue afterwards it’s $69.99 CAD. It’s interactive, they have Q&A sessions, quizzes, assignments, and unlimited access to all of their courses – so if you wanted to take photography and finance, you can totally do that. Also, this is not an ad, I just really enjoyed their platform. Of course, there are many other platforms that do relatively the same stuff for online courses.

Stay safe, healthy & sane everyone.

Ps. Quick reminder to follow my blog to stay updated on new posts and also wash your hands 🙂

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Uncategorized

how to go to the damn gym

So, I’ve had such a love/hate relationship with the gym for years. I see (and follow) a ton of fitness girls on instagram such as Tammy Hembrow, Gabby Scheyen, Caroline Omahony, Shannon Henry just to name a few. I’ve idolized these girls for their dedication and their ability to wake up everyday and get their asses to the gym while also maintaining a great diet I might add. So, if I idolize these people so much why don’t I try to improve myself and just do it? Well, to be frank – it’s what I like to call gym anxiety. The times that I feel motivated and ready to hustle and actually make it to the gym, I immediately feel regret as soon as I park my car. It sets in. I’m here. Now, maybe the gym anxiety comes from not knowing how to use every single machine there? Or maybe the fear of people looking at me while I work out or judging me on the light weights that I use. Whatever it is, my mind is truly taking advantage of this whole experience for me. I wish I could just shut it off and go in there, crush a workout and leave happy. My solution lately has been going with my boyfriend and practically following him around doing his workout routine because I get too scared to do my own. The truth is, nobody is looking at you. Everyone is there for the same reason and everyone started where I am now – doing those light weights and getting used to the machines and the environment. The hard facts are that nobody really cares that I’m there or not, they are focused on their success and their improvements physically. So, I have decided to do the same. I know that every time I park my car at the gym, that sneaky gym anxiety shivers through my body and so I have found a few solutions that are helpful for me and might be helpful for anyone else who has the same issue.

Number one – headphones. I like to wear my airpods (yep, basic) and I’ve already compiled a list of songs that are geared towards pumping me up, which are typically hip-hop and a little EDM. I’ve named it GYM and so far I have about 40 songs. The music helps to get me into my own little zone and I enjoy my workouts 1000x more with music playing anyways.

Number two – wear a hat. Hats are great for the gym because a) don’t worry about your hair frizzing from the sweat and b) it gives off a “don’t talk to me” vibe. Now, that vibe isn’t to be rude, it’s more of a “I am here for the sole purpose of working out”. I also think it gives me a bit more confidence for some reason (?)

Number three – plan ahead. I know that whenever I don’t plan my routine, I end up just walking over to the treadmills and I feel super awkward about not knowing what to do next. Planning ahead will make sure you’re prepared for the workout and know where to go, which reduces the anxiety and stress! I actually purchased a workout plan from Gabby Sheyen called Gabby Gains Guide Vol. 2.

Number four – grab a partner! Now, I normally go with my boyfriend. But his workouts aren’t exactly perfect for what I am trying to accomplish. He is trying to grow his arms and chest like most men, and I’m trying to grow my legs, glutes and overall tone my entire body. I will still do arm exercises of course – those aren’t crossed off the list. But, try to grab a partner who has the same goals as you such as another girl friend.

Number five – pre-workout. This is completely optional. Pre-workout is not for everyone. But, I like to use Rivalus Powder Burn 2.0 in the flavour Orange. It’s not too extreme but it gives me some energy and gets me extra pumped to go to the gym, and it also forces me to stick to it because it’s not exactly good for you to just take pre-workout and skip your workout.

I hope these tips helped a few of you that may have the same issue as I do. If any of you purchase the Gabby Gains Guide, there’s a facebook group that’s called Gain With Gabby and it’s basically just a group of girls that are all in the same boat and want to improve their fitness/health! They are super supportive and it’s a sweet group, even if you haven’t purchased it you can still join, it kind of helps to know that there’s lots of other people who are feeling the same way.

Til next time, my dudes.